Reluctant donors? The Europeanization of international development policies in the New Member States

Simon Lightfoot, Balázs Szent-Iványi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The European Union (EU) played an instrumental role in re-starting the international development policies in central and eastern European Member States, but questions remain about how far this policy area has been Europeanized since accession. Focusing on the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia, this article investigates why the new donors have been reluctant to adopt the EU's development acquis more fully. The article traces the socialization processes offered by the EU's development policy rule-making and subsequent national rule implementation. The conclusions reveal three reasons why socialization has been weak: perceptions among the new Member States on the procedural legitimacy of the development acquis; low domestic resonance with the development acquis; and inconsistencies in the activities of norm entrepreneurs. The article contributes to our understanding of development policy in the EU – particularly how decision-making takes place within the Council and its working groups post-enlargement.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1257-1272
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Common Market Studies
Issue number6
Early online date27 Feb 2014
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2014

Bibliographical note

This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Lightfoot, S., & Szent-iványi, B. (2014). Reluctant Donors? The Europeanization of International Development Policies in the New Member States. Journal of common market studies, 52(6), 1257-1272, which has been published in final form at This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance With Wiley Terms and Conditions for self-archiving.

Versions of this article were presented at the 40th UACES Annual Conference, Bruges, 6–8 September 2010; the 63rd PSA Annual International Conference, Cardiff, 25–27 March 2013; the 13th EUSA Biennial Conference, Baltimore, MD, 9–11 May 2013; and the 8th Pan-European Conference on International Relations, Warsaw, 18–21 September 2013, alongside various seminars and workshops.


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